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Innovation & Entrepreneurship

NREL's Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center (IEC) helps connect emerging clean energy businesses with the financial community, NREL technical expertise and facilities, and the broader clean energy ecosystem.

The following programs are made possible through support from the IEC. 

         Wells Fargo IN2

Wells Fargo Innovation Incubator (IN2)

The Wells Fargo Innovation Incubator (IN2) is a technology incubator and platform funded by the Wells Fargo Foundation and co-administered by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). IN2 helps speed the path to market for early-stage clean energy and agriculture technologies by providing funding and technical assistance that leverages the capabilities, facilities, equipment, and deep expertise at NREL and the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center (Danforth Center).

Shell GCxN

Shell Gamechanger Powered by NREL  (GCxN)

The Shell GameChanger Accelerator™ Powered by NREL (GCxN) provides promising cleantech start-ups with access to financial resources, state-of-the-art facilities, and world-class technical experts.


Chevron Studio

Chevron Studio is a one-of-a-kind program designed to help entrepreneurs build companies by linking them with world-class, early-stage technologies developed at national labs and universities. The program provides assistance to entrepreneurs to help them scale-up and commercialize these technologies. Chevron Studio will initially focus on carbon utilization, hydrogen and renewable energy, energy storage systems, and solutions for a circular economy.

The Clean Energy Cybersecurity AcceleratorTM (CECA)

The Clean Energy Cybersecurity AcceleratorTM (CECA) is a technology-accelerating program to expedite innovative solutions that secure our energy grid. Sponsored by the DOE and major utilities in the US, CECA offers a pathway to technical validation and demonstration to develop customer relationships and enable market transition.

Energy ICorps

Energy I-Corps

Energy I-Corps pairs teams of national laboratory researchers with industry mentors.  The team embarks on an intensive two-month training program where the researchers define technology value propositions, conduct customer discovery interviews, and develop viable market pathways for their technologies.

The NREL Industry Growth Forum (IGF)'s mission is to foster a collaborative community of thought leaders and build relationships between NREL experts, cleantech startups, investors, accelerators, incubators, and other cleantech industry leaders to showcase and explore innovative technologies and disruptive business solutions. The Forum spurs technology to market through increased funding opportunities, mentorship, networking opportunities, and investor to entrepreneur interaction.

IGF 2023 will be held on May 2-3 in Denver, CO

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